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  1. #141
    Freshman Member simulatedworld's Avatar
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    Merc--

    I see that we're operating on different definitions of the word "Libertarian"--

    As I pointed out earlier it means many different things in different contexts. I was referring to the American Libertarian Party, which apparently you neither support nor approve of. It's extremely misleading, though, for you to continue referring to yourself in this way when the obvious connotation is that you support the American LP.

    I could go back through American history and pick some old and now totally defunct definition of "Republican", but I shouldn't be surprised when people take this to mean that I support the modern Republican party. If you don't support the biggest and most significant group in this country referring to itself as "Libertarian" today, you need to specify that you support a different form of libertarianism. What do you expect people to assume?

    In any event, politics is all about compromise and your approach on all of it seems to be "Pick some principles and then never, ever accept anything less than 100% compliance from everyone else" and this doesn't really work in the real world. Virtually nothing is black and white, and you don't reach political goals by whining up a storm any time the slightest little bit of your political philosophy is violated by government. If you're never ever willing to give an inch, you're not going to magically get a foot back in return. You assume this idealistic utopia of perfect inalienable rights is the ONLY acceptable form of government and it puts you really, really out of touch with reality.

    This "ALL or NOTHING!" attitude toward politics is really not going to get you very far in terms of recruiting more people to the cause or actually getting any legislative changes passed. It makes your opponents totally unwilling to compromise with you, which is the basis of politics. I'd grow up and get over the black and white die hard idealism if I were you, and pronto. Real life requires compromises with opposing ideologies to get anything done.
    If you could be anything you want, I bet you'd be disappointed--am I right?

  2. #142
    Senior Member lowtech redneck's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Katsuni View Post
    The USA is a very right-ist country compared to the rest of the world. Even the "left" in the USA is farther right than most "right" in other countries.
    And a damn good thing, too; The United States is a state-nation explicitly based on the concept of individual rights and limited government, so overtly socialist principles have never been able maintain a large following, as they are in direct conflict with the the moral, cultural, and institutional foundations of the country. Modern American "liberalism" is basically what Europeans call "social-liberalism," where individual rights are still assumed to take precedence, but so-called "positive" rights are assumed to have almost as much importance as so-called "negative" rights. I think the American left often crosses the line into social-democratic populism in practice, but the need to justify statist policies through the paradigm of individual rights limits the potential damage.

    I'm a liberal-conservative, myself.

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    Quote Originally Posted by Katsuni View Post
    I wasn't going to bother posting on this, but I'd like to cover explanations for the parts he skipped over since replies like this are just ludicrous.

    Every single government form has its' advantages, and its' disadvantages. If there were no advantage, it wouldn't be a form of government in the first place, it'd just be overthrown immediately.
    Not true. There is always a lag between reality and popular opinion, and there is often a complete disconnect between the two. Do you think the average Soviet citizen would have guessed that the Soviet economy was less than 1/3rd the size of the American economy post-WWII? The CIA estimated that the Soviet economy was about 70% the size of ours for decades. They were wrong, and they weren't exactly a citadel of pro-Sovietism.


    Many fascist states actually have *HIGHER* public approval rating than the USA's own government. Go figure.
    Irrelevant.


    Specifically, there are some very strong benefits to fascist concepts; for example, a fascist leader has alot of power, some situations a country may face can often require a single leader with great authority to override red tape and political infighting. In the states, change is slow, and even perfectly good ideas are bickered over, then often given up on because people spend years quibbling over the fine details that don't even really matter all that much.

    A fascist leader can just override that and make stronger decisions with a unified implementation, allowing for change to occur far faster.
    These are BAD things. It's bad to have tons of power invested in one person, and it's bad to implement change quickly and in a top-down fashion. That is how terrible things happen to society.


    The fact that a fascist government also has minimal dealings with the commercial and business sectors, allows for businesses to thrive fairly quickly, and theoretically, allows the average citizen far greater ability to move through the social ladder.
    This isn't even true. One of the main tenets of fascism is government direction of the economy. I have no idea where you are getting "minimal dealings with the commercial and business sectors." Fascism necessitates a corporatist state.


    There are, however, flaws to this reasoning. Like any government. The problem with fascism, and communism, isn't that they don't have any redeemable qualities, that's silly. It's that they assume that people will not abuse the system and that everyone is perfect. Obviously, these're flawed assumptions. Power corrupts, absolute power corrupts absolutely, and fascism is pretty close to absolute power. Communism assumes everyone wants to work hard, and doesn't take lazyness into account at all.
    Communism and fascism are wrong IN THEIR IDEALS, not just the application. Their political goals are anti-liberty and atavistic.


    So yeah, those're just a few basic points, but to honestly believe it's black and white that there's *NO* benefit at all is something a child would understand... because they can't grasp the greater complexities of socioeconomic policies. To honestly believe it's black and white, is to either be a child, or to be fooled by propaganda.
    No, it's childish to believe that all political systems are created equal. If you, in the year 2009, honestly think that there are any positives associated with totalitarian systems of government, then I feel really bad for you.


    Communism and fascism are actually very powerful and useful tools. In basic theory, they're actually significantly much more beneficial than democracy. The problem is that humans screw everything up, and while there's greater possibility for benefit from these forms of government, there's also much much much greater possibility for abuse. The only stable form of communism ever maintained so far had uhm... 20ish scientists working in an isolated community. It was actually the best form of government for them at the time, and worked far better than democracy ever could've dreamed of doing.
    No, they are not. They are not more beneficial. They are far, far worse. And democracy is just a means to an end, not the end itself. The United States is a constitutional republic, not a democracy, and that is a very important difference (and a good thing, as well).


    But... it was a small group, of hand selected people, all of which were dedicated to a specific task at hand, and none of which were attempting to abuse the system. As soon as someone attempts to abuse fascism or communism, both are very weak to that. Democracy has alot of crap that slows progress, but it also limits such abuses, though it can't prevent them. It just makes it alot harder to get ANYTHING done, including abuse.
    The goals of communism are wrong. The fatal flaw is not that people want to abuse power. It's impracticable INHERENTLY.


    Actually, he's not wrong.

    The terms "left" and "right" actually stem from economic policies first and foremost, with political views based upon those economic policies second. While we typically use them interchangeably these days, due to most people not understanding the conceptualization behind why the terms exist, it actually is pretty much as he described in terms of the basic structure.
    This a very glib characterization that doesn't take into account most of what is actually happening politically.


    Yeu can be 'right' politically and 'left' economically, and may even try to claim yeu're 'right', but the economic policies are whot dictate the political ones, as politics in the states are based not off of personal political views, but off of the capitalistic approach of putting money before everything else. Left tending economics will invariably lead to left based political ideals in order to enforce those economic concepts.
    Wait, so is left and right an economic thing, as you said before, or is it economic and social? And you are COMPLETELY wrong about "left-tending economics" leading to "left-based political ideals." Pat Buchanan is a pro-trade union, pro-protectionism paleoconservative. How did his left-tending economics lead to left-based political ideals? Oh, right: they didn't. This whole paragraph is nonsensical.


    Check carefully the Paleoconservatives that yeu've mentioned as well; they actually *DO* have right leaning economic values, they just happen to look at things from a very long term point of view, with more or less no emphasis placed on short term policies and such. They want things to end up a certain way but don't care how they get there, and consider a short term victory in the moment to be pointless, regardless of whether that victory is required or not to sustain their long term goals. As such, their actual capacity for change is much less than it really should be due to this "can't see the trees through the forrest" perspective.p
    What does this even mean? This doesn't make any sense.


    Actually... he's right, and he's kinda wrong too.

    The *POLITICAL PARTY WHICH CALLS THEMSELVES LIBERTARIANS* is actually quite far right on the spectrum. There is, however, a libertarian left group as well.
    I am not talking about left-libertarians. I am talking about American libertarians.


    Essentially, the right group is heavily right-leaning in terms of economic policies, but is a bit left on some social ones which don't directly relate to their economic plan, which is primarily the insistence that everyone has the right to keep their own property, and that said property is of more value than life itself. Theft would be a greater crime than murder to a true libertarian extremist.
    You have no basis for such a disgusting insinuation. How would property be more valuable than life itself? One's life is part of one's property. That doesn't make any sense, and I would appreciate it if you apologized for that outrageous claim.


    The leftist economic view, however, believes virtually the opposite despite having the same name 'libertarian'; where, instead of insisting that land, air, water, etc must be owned individually, they insist it must be owned communally and distributed in a method which is equal to all, or since we're using economic terms, egalitarian in premise.
    No one would believes that air or sunlight can be owned individually. They aren't economic goods.


    Essentially though, in terms of economic stance, the actual party which claims libertarianism, is heavily right-leaning. Not all libertarians are, but if yeu're going to state the term, it implies that the usage is one of the accepted view, in which case he's fully correct in stating that it's a right-based concept.
    I took issue with the fact that the Libertarian Party is a very small subset of libertarians. simulatedworld is quite obviously ignorant of libertarian literature and libertarian thinkers.


    Uhm... think yeu're missing the point =3

    Conservatism concepts, by default, imply resistance to change. Once change occurs, they want to change it BACK to whot it was. Both of yeu are right, and both are wrong, on fine details and on semantics. Yes, most conservatives don't want change. And yes, once change occurs, the only change they want is to change it back to whot it was. The difference is that a strong conservative basically wants it to be the 1950's really really badly. All their changes are based on trying to reattain that perceived 'golden age', whether they realize they're actually trying for that or not. The biggest problem though, is they don't remember how much the 50's sucked >.>;
    This doesn't make sense, either. Who the hell is talking about the 1950s? And a lot of conservatives don't want to turn back the clock, or they want to turn back the clock much further. Are you stoned? Seriously, what the hell are you babbling about?


    That being said, someone who is happy with the system and wants to prevent other political groups from destroying it, is still political, even if they don't want change. Though admittedly, the concept of someone not wanting to change things to better suit themselves in some method isn't even a human concept, so, while they would still be *POLITICAL*, they wouldn't be *HUMAN*.
    So I am inhuman because I would want to change the political system we have now even if it could actually affect me negatively?


    Unfortunately, the whole premise of government in the first place is that people *DON'T* know whot's best for themselves. If we all knew whot was best for ourselves, we wouldn't have a government in the first place. The reason why yeu elect someone, is so that yeu can go about yeur daily life, and let them spend every waking hour researching, learning, and applying the information required to make an educated decision. The reason *WHY* there's a government at all is because the average person seriously doesn't know crap all about economics, sociological concepts, nor international practices. Government exists primarily to do "whot's best for everyone". Or more specifically, "whot will best match the views of the people who voted for us".
    Most people in government don't know crap about economics or sociology, either. And if you believe that government does "what's best for everyone" then YOU are the one who is childish.


    And this's why yeu're both right and wrong here; the average person *DOESN'T* know whot's best for them as a whole. They have more fine details and better how to handle the smaller aspects of their individual situation, but for their situation as a whole they're clueless on average.

    The problem with libertarianism is that it kind of assumes heavily that the "fine details" are broader in scope than they really are.
    The average person knows better for themselves than the government does for them. The average person also knows less well about what the government does or should do.


    Actually, it goes back to 1789, they just didn't happen to use the term 'libertarian' until later on. The concept has existed for quite alot longer than the definition.
    Yes, libertarian means something different now than it did then. So does liberal. If we are going to change again, I'd gladly take liberal back.


    As for the 'group as a whole', yeu're missing the fact that there's actually a strong dichotomy of two groups both claiming to be libertarian, yet having virtually opposing viewpoints on most of the primary topics which defines them as libertarian.
    No, I am not. I know what left-libertarians/libertarian socialists believe. Again, completely irrelevant to the issue at hand.


    That being said, if yeu are going to claim yeu're a libertarian, the typical response will be to go with the libertarian party as the assumption of that's whot yeu mean. Yeu could be on the other side as well, but there's no way to know that.
    That is incorrect. The average person who knows a decent amount about politics knows the difference between the Libertarian Party and libertarianism as a whole. That's why this is so frustrating. You and simulatedworld should know better. SW hasn't even quoted ONE libertarian writer, just dictionary definitions and mentioning the LP platform.


    He is correct, though. If yeu want to maintain yeur beliefs, yeu'd be better off not calling yeurself libertarian, as yeu don't hold the views of the party associated with the concept. I'm highly liberal myself, but I don't call myself a liberal, because the liberal party *ISN'T*.
    Libertarianism the movement predates the Libertarian Party, of which I am not a member. Should conservatives give up their self-description because they aren't members of the Conservative Party? This is ridiculous.


    Friedman discusses moreso information based on non-economic policies, such as the war on drugs.
    Oh, really? Milton Friedman, who won the Nobel Prize for ECONOMICS, discusses moreso based on non-economic policies? Look, I know he covered a ton of ground, but the man was first and foremost a libertarian economist. One of the most eminent economists of all time, too.


    Rothbard wasn't much better on the economic perspective as can be denoted here:



    He wasn't arguing the meanings we use today. The "left" and "right" he refers to are political idealizations, not economic beliefs, and primarily focused on the history in europe, rather than the current situation, which's much different.
    And what does this have to do with anything?


    Barnett I've never even heard of, and Freddy von hayek (he gets a claw hand! =D ) actually states that the "government has a role to play in the economy through the monetary system, work-hours regulation, and institutions for the flow of proper information."


    Barnett's the only one who even touches on economics, and he disagrees with most of whot yeu've said since he's the opposite end of the spectrum of libertarians =3
    What are you talking about? Randy Barnett is a law professor who writes primarily on libertarian/anarchist constitutional law. He is the one who DOESN'T talk about economics with regularity. Milton Friedman is a monetarist ECONOMIST. Murray Rothbard is an Austrian ECONOMIST. Friedrich Hayek is an Austrian ECONOMIST. He also won the Nobel Prize for Economics.


    If such is the case, I advise yeu to find new sources of information, the ones yeu have don't seem to give the whole picture all that well.
    Yeah, I am DEFINITELY the person who needs new information. . .


    Hardly; the right to life, liberty, and property, also implies it must be at the expense of another, as it's impossible to do otherwise; taking from one to give to another actually is key within that role.

    If one requires property (a house, food, water) to maintain life, and another has an excess of property required for life, while another has not enough property to maintain life, to fail to provide such for the other is to tred upon the right to life of the other. In so doing, one gives up their own rights, and forcible action must be taken to correct such.
    You have a right to keep that which is already yours, and you have a right to try to acquire more through voluntary exchange. You do NOT have a right to take forcibly that which you do not have. It's a pretty fucking easy concept. If I own a house, I didn't take that house from you, and I don't owe you one.


    Sadly things are not black and white, as much as we'd like them to be. It'd make these decisions so much easier; noone would ever choose black. But things really aren't that easy. People can study their entire lives on the topic, and change their minds repeatedly, the grey is such a blend that it's near impossible to differentiate.
    This is not true. There are black and white things in life. It's black and white that communism and fascism are failures, for instance. There is no gray there.


    Unless yeu're a SITH! Yeu're not a SITH are yeu!? :O
    Now, HERE is where gray comes into play. I am a Gray Jedi.


    Actually he stated both sides of it quite well, and then also specified the accepted party as well as seperate from such. He seems to have a pretty good understanding of the concept, and was merely stating that if yeu claim to be such, then yeu need to realize whot the term is accepted to mean.
    But what the terms means is not what SW was saying it meant, i.e., incorrect.

    I do disagree with the argument on the 1% vote thing, unfortunately if yeu had the option in the states to vote for bush, clinton, or jesus, jesus would only get a 1% vote or less because he's not a republican or democrat.[/QUOTE]

    Well, that at least makes sense.


    That being said though, the other half of the argument he gave is also that the majority also look at the LP as the primary description of libertarianism; to maintain the title is to claim yeu hold the same views. If yeu tell people yeu're a democrat, they expect yeu to have vaguely similar beliefs as democrats do... funny how that works.
    But this is not true. A libertarian is NOT automatically a Libertarian. Why don't we try the example the right way, hmm? If someone is a democrat, does that make them a Democrat? If someone is a republican, does that make them a Republican? NO! A democrat is someone in favor of democracy. A Democrat is someone who is a member of the Democratic Party. A republican is someone in favor of a republic. A Republican is a member of the Republican Party. This is something a 10-year-old can understand. By your logic, Ancient Athenians were members of the Democratic Party, and the IRA were members of the Republican Party. I cannot believe that I have to explain to you.


    Actually, it's also the same restrictions which severely reduce the number of deaths and illnesses from inadequate testing of side effects. There's the occasional one that slips through and makes the headlines, but the only reason it makes the headlines is BECAUSE it's so rare.
    The number of people who have died waiting for medicines to be approved or who have died because of overprescription of approved drugs DWARFS the number of people who have died from reactions to approved drugs that were inherently dangerous.


    There's also the matter that costs must be relevant as well. If yeu could blow 1 billion dollars on the cure to cancer, or 1 billion on a cure to hypophosphatasia, I think most people would want to cure the cancer. Except for the people afflicted with hypophosphatasia.
    And yet cancer hasn't been cured. Nor has AIDS. But erectile dysfunction is going to be a thing of the past!


    Medical advances would virtually cease if the government stayed out of things, due to lack of funding, as a company won't invest *ANY* money into a problem without a large enough target niche. Yeu wouldn't find any research going into anything other than aids, cancer, MS, and diabetes anymore probably, because anything else just doesn't provide enough of an economic return.
    Really? How the hell does that work? Companies invest into niche markets in EVERY industry ALL the time.


    His first argument is admittedly fairly flawed on that topic. The second, however, I think yeu have issues with. Which I've stated already. Repeatedly XD
    You may want to go over them, since you can't even seem to figure out the difference between democrat and Democrat, or even know which libertarians are economists and which aren't.


    When defining rights, they must be listed with conditions. Otherwise they aren't rights because they have nothing set to state whot the rights actually ARE.

    The mere fact that yeu can state that it's "Not protected free speech" is a condition, stating that "yeu have the freedom of speech in all areas, with the conventionalized exceptions of..."
    You expect me to state everything someone can do which is NOT a right? I already pointed out that you have a right to own guns, but you don't have the right to go around shooting people. The fact that some things AREN'T rights doesn't mean that everything that IS a right is conditional.


    It's not a point at all, since yeu have to make an argument to support such. Just going "no u r rong" doesn't make it true in the slightest.

    Note the quote at the bottom of my post.

    "It doesn't matter if yeu're right, if yeu can't prove yeu're right, yeu're wrong. No matter how right yeu are."

    Even *IF* it were true, yeu need to know WHY that's the case, and explain such. If yeu don't understand, then yeu have no way of knowing if yeu're really right or not. Being right for the wrong reasons means yeu can't reapply that information in any context, and yeu don't really know that yeu're right in the first place.
    Yeu know, I think yeu may be onto something here. Yeu are just coming at things from a different angle. Yeu and I aren't so different. . . Oh, I can't keep this up. What the hell is up with "yeu" the whole damn time?


    As such, no, yeu're wrong, period. Because yeu provided no argument or explanation. It is therefore impossible for yeu to be truly correct on the matter as yeu've shown no comprehension on it. Picking 50/50 chance on a yes/no test doesn't make yeu correct.
    I've already explained why it's wrong. Painstakingly so.


    Most individuals WON'T do this though. The first may occur, but are abnormalities, and not persistant enough to be sustainable for any length of time.

    Do yeu really think that without ANY fire department funding, and without ANY government run libraries, that there'd be enough private donations? Such money has to come from somewhere, and most who have it won't donate such in every single way. How do yeu determine which person donates a school, which donates a library, which donates a fire department... have a fire in the rich part of town and 6 fire departments are funded. All around the rich part of town. It doesn't solve much of anything.
    I was pointing out that it can be done. And that fire department covered all of Philadelphia, my hometown, BTW. It was the best fire department in the world, save for maybe London's. Now, I believe in a small government, and local governments can do some things effectively. However, you and SW seem to be operating from the mentality that whatever the government does, it SHOULD be doing, and that is just not true.


    [QUOTE]Having organized infrastructure for everyone is not possible via volunteer work alone.

    And there is the fact that if taxes were lowered, the costs would increase. Yeu forget that money is a sliding scale; if yeu have more money, then things cost more. If yeu didn't spend money on taxes, yeur health care, fire department coverage, police payments, and so on would skyrocket beyond whot yeu could concievably afford. To be blunt, it's due to those taxes that yeu have as much money as yeu do have.
    Which costs would increase? The cost of health care has SKYROCKETED since government got involved. The various levels of government in the United States contribute over 40 cents out of every dollar spent on health care now, and the system is insanely expensive. Your assertion here is not backed by reality.
    Who wants to try a bottle of merc's "Extroversion Olive Oil?"

  4. #144
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    Canada tends to have much higher taxes due to being a socialist country rather than a capitalistic one. If someone in the states gets cancer and couldn't afford insurance, or their insurance company ditches them because they're a liability now... they pretty much are screwed for life, and are destined to die, heavily in debt. Higher taxes in canada means if such occurs, if it were possible to treat that cancer form, yeu'd probably have lived, and not be forever in debt for the rest of yeur life doing it.
    Canada is not a particularly socialist country. In fact, they score higher on many indices of liberty than does the United States.


    Taxes suck, yes, we know. But they save yeu money in the long run, even if alot of that money is wasted. How much money is thrown at useless ventures, spent on the wages of the people who maintain the infrastructure, how much covers expendatures like heat and water to government buildings?
    The majority of the federal governments expenditures are on transfer payments, health care, and defense. Keeping the lights on at government buildings is a drop in the bucket.


    The costs are high, yes, and yet they make yeur own cost of living substantially lower than they would be otherwise, to the point, that yeur costs are less than yeu put into it.
    This is completely and totally untrue.


    Because larger corporations and individuals who are richer than yeu are, are taking a bit of the burden off yeur shoulders, because if there were zero taxes, yeu wouldn't be capable of surviving in today's modern age. It worked 100 years ago but it doesn't work anymore.
    Why is that? We didn't have zero taxes a hundred years ago, BTW. We even had income taxes before that, during the Civil War. Read a history book.



    Government, by default, is not good at all. But it's necessary. It organizes things we don't have the time nor resources to organize ourselves. It lowers our living expenses, it maintains a balance of rights, and it does many other essential services.
    Lowers our living expenses? HAHAHAHAHAHA!

    On the other hand, it sucks bad too, it can repress alot of stuff it shouldn't, can be the cause of completely destroying people for no reason (McCarthyism, many dictators, bush, most communism attempts, etc).
    Most of what the federal government now does can be stopped tomorrow and the country wouldn't break down.


    ...Well I told yeu guys I'd hit the character limit sooner or later.

    "The text that you have entered is too long (27287 characters). Please shorten it to 25000 characters long."
    I would have preferred to have seen it shortened to 0 characters, although that whole "Barnett touches on economics" thing was entertaining enough to merit reading.
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  5. #145
    Minister of Propagandhi ajblaise's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by lowtech redneck View Post
    And a damn good thing, too; The United States is a state-nation explicitly based on the concept of individual rights and limited government, so overtly socialist principles have never been able maintain a large following, as they are in direct conflict with the the moral, cultural, and institutional foundations of the country.
    Actually, the United States was behind the curve when it came to granting the key individual rights, like abolishing slavery, granting women voting rights, black voting rights, civil rights etc... compared to other Western nations, which progressed sooner.

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    Quote Originally Posted by ajblaise View Post
    Actually, the United States was behind the curve when it came to granting the key individual rights, like abolishing slavery, granting women voting rights, black voting rights, civil rights etc... compared to other Western nations, which progressed sooner.
    I know, right? The United States was initially founded on individual rights and freedoms for white males over the age of 21 who owned property....and strangely, most modern libertarians seem to fit that description as well.

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    Quote Originally Posted by simulatedworld View Post
    Merc--

    I see that we're operating on different definitions of the word "Libertarian"--

    As I pointed out earlier it means many different things in different contexts. I was referring to the American Libertarian Party, which apparently you neither support nor approve of. It's extremely misleading, though, for you to continue referring to yourself in this way when the obvious connotation is that you support the American LP.
    No, we aren't really. I support most of the LP platform, but I don't support the LP completely. I have voted for LP candidates in the past, like Harry Browne. It's only misleading to you because you don't know what the words mean. Please read the wiki for libertarianism (see? small-l).

    Libertarianism - Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia


    I could go back through American history and pick some old and now totally defunct definition of "Republican", but I shouldn't be surprised when people take this to mean that I support the modern Republican party. If you don't support the biggest and most significant group in this country referring to itself as "Libertarian" today, you need to specify that you support a different form of libertarianism. What do you expect people to assume?
    I expect them to know the difference between democrat and Democrat, and republican and Republican. You should know the difference if you are going to argue politics. Capitalizing words makes them proper nouns.


    In any event, politics is all about compromise and your approach on all of it seems to be "Pick some principles and then never, ever accept anything less than 100% compliance from everyone else" and this doesn't really work in the real world. Virtually nothing is black and white, and you don't reach political goals by whining up a storm any time the slightest little bit of your political philosophy is violated by government. If you're never ever willing to give an inch, you're not going to magically get a foot back in return. You assume this idealistic utopia of perfect inalienable rights is the ONLY acceptable form of government and it puts you really, really out of touch with reality.
    It really should be the only acceptable form of government. Obviously, nothing is going to be perfect in the world, but that should not mean accepting things that are really, really fucked up.


    This "ALL or NOTHING!" attitude toward politics is really not going to get you very far in terms of recruiting more people to the cause or actually getting any legislative changes passed. It makes your opponents totally unwilling to compromise with you, which is the basis of politics. I'd grow up and get over the black and white die hard idealism if I were you, and pronto. Real life requires compromises with opposing ideologies to get anything done.
    Most people in Washington are so concerned with power and response to an uneducated electorate that they really aren't interested in holding up their constitutional duties.
    Who wants to try a bottle of merc's "Extroversion Olive Oil?"

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    Quote Originally Posted by ajblaise View Post
    Actually, the United States was behind the curve when it came to granting the key individual rights, like abolishing slavery, granting women voting rights, black voting rights, civil rights etc... compared to other Western nations, which progressed sooner.
    This is a good point, but the problem here is the acknowledgment that minorities and women are equal individuals. The United States was far AHEAD of the curve vis-a-vis individual rights when it comes to government. We were behind the curve when it comes to who those individuals were.
    Who wants to try a bottle of merc's "Extroversion Olive Oil?"

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    Quote Originally Posted by pure_mercury View Post
    Why is that? We didn't have zero taxes a hundred years ago, BTW. We even had income taxes before that, during the Civil War. Read a history book.








    .
    We did have taxes 100 years ago ... because that would be 1909 and smack dab in the middle of progressivism...but actually the only taxes in the United States even following the Civil War were import tariffs. There were no income taxes at that point. And yeah, I learned that from a history book and from someone who has a Masters in History with a specialization in American History and a J.D. in law.

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    Quote Originally Posted by marmalade.sunrise View Post
    We did have taxes 100 years ago ... because that would be 1909 and smack dab in the middle of progressivism...but actually the only taxes in the United States even following the Civil War were import tariffs. There were no income taxes at that point. And yeah, I learned that from a history book and from someone who has a Masters in History with a specialization in American History and a J.D. in law.
    You are incorrect.

    History of the US Income Tax (Business Reference Services, Library of Congress)

    EDIT: I should be clearer. There WERE income taxes before the 16th Amendment was ratified, but that was in 1913. From 1895 until then, they were considered unconstitutional, but we absolutely had income taxes prior to 1913.
    Who wants to try a bottle of merc's "Extroversion Olive Oil?"

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